As some of you know, COVID-19 changed many aspects of the non-profit world, often in unexpected ways. Instead of having one event a month and one class a week, we now have up to 3 events a day… and our audiences still have an appetite for more. Our 3-year-old Yiddish Arts and Academics Association of North America (YAAANA) used to be a small local organization with a mission to yiddishize San Diego County. In the midst of COVID-19 lockdowns, it has grown into an international enterprise. As a result, we need to expand our team and intend to hire more educators, artists, and collaboration partners from all over the world to contribute to our programming.
Since March 2020, we offered a variety of classes and events, including Yiddish language classes for beginner and intermediate speakers, lectures on Yiddish music, LGBTQ topics in Yiddish literature, alternative theater experiences, Yiddish yoga, and interviews with Yiddish celebrities. We are also organizing a festival celebrating Yiddish cultural creations made by women. In the second half of 2020, we would like to expand our offerings to include more Yiddish classes and conversational circles on an advanced level. Moreover, we strive to create new paid positions for Yiddish educators, including those who can teach Yiddish in different languages such as Spanish, Russian, Polish, or Hebrew. In 2021, we are hoping to have a summer Yiddish school that would be accessible locally in San Diego, as well as remotely through Zoom.
YAAANA distinguishes itself by embracing academic Yiddish as well as all dialects of Yiddish we encounter on our way. That tradition would continue once we create our summer Yiddish program.
Currently, our primary goal is to build the International House of Yiddish – first as a virtual house and later a physical one. The mageyfe (plague) experience has taught us that we need both, and we need them ASAP!
Please consider making a donation to YAAANA! We would appreciate it if you could share this campaign with your friends, acquaintances, and mishpokhe. Unfortunately, we cannot accept tax-deductible donations just yet but we will be able to do so in a few weeks.
A groysn dank! (Many thanks!)
The YAAANA team